Atlanta-based Coca-Cola CEO James Quincey recently reported that Diet Coke sales are up, apparently on the success of marketing “flavor innovation” to the millennial demographic. If you have seen Diet Coke, these, days, you know that that Coca-Cola has definitely been playing with different flavors to appeal to more soda fans.
In addition to these flavors, though, Quincey also noted that Diet Coke has a new “sleek can” that, he says, offers a “modern, more engaging package” to this generation, one that is so far detached from the original product.
Quincey remarks, “I think that combination, executed by the bottlers, has brought people in. And they found something that they like in something that is ultimately a great tasting beverage.”
All that in mind, the beverage giant has reported double-digit growth, partly due to some improvement in its diet soda business. And this has helped to raise quarter earnings and to boost revenue beyond expectations.
Perhaps inflation and aluminum tariffs may also have something to do with Coca-Cola’s innovations, particularly in that slimmer can. Indeed, Quincey notes that the new challenges have presented some novel opportunity to “bring some innovation into the packaging” in order to adapt to any changes. “I think that’s what’s allowed us to continue to grow volumes,” he continues, “Even though we had to pass through some of the input cost into the price because we’re providing something that’s interesting to the consumers.”
“There are a lot of immediate consumption channels. We can work with those customers and those channels. We can go to the at-home occasion with pods and beans and capsules. And we can bring ready-to-drink coffee to many more parts of the world.”
Part of that strategy might have something to do with Coke paying more than $5 billion to acquire the second-largest coffee chain in the world. And it might also have something to do with buying stakes in the sports drink BodyArmor, which is endorsed by Kobe Bryant, in continued pursuit of the millennial market.
On the other hand, Quincey denies any claims that Coke plans to enter the cannabis-infused beverage market. He notes, “We don’t have any plans at this stage to get into this space.”